One of a Kind Gallery, LLC, is the result of a discussion between two good friends. Bonnie Johnson revealed that she would really like to manage a small card shop/gift shop type of store, and Anne Crabbe confessed that she had been trying to set up a co-operative of artists – with absolutely no success. Many artists, it seems, are more prone to imagination and creation (thank goodness) than to the logical thinking and mundane tasks involved in setting up a business.
After more discussion, the two began looking for a possible site for their idea. In the Belvedere Plaza in downtown Southern Pines, they found a space that clicked with their image of an art gallery: small, intimate spaces that enhanced displays of gorgeous art.
The Belvedere Hotel was an elegant hotel at one time; built in 1905, it was renovated in 2002. One of a Kind Gallery, LLC, occupies three old hotel rooms plus two alcoves. They still have the original flooring, thought to be of Long Leaf Pine, native to the Sandhills. Large windows with huge sills and walls that aren’t quite straight add to the charm of the setting that allows customers to meander throughout the gallery and inspect the art “up close and personal.”
The next task was that of persuading talented artists to take a risk and join this new adventure. Amazingly, almost all who were invited, agreed to participate. The result is a wonderful mix of artists, who represent a wide range of the arts: photographer, painters, potters, jewelers, card-makers, basket maker, sculptor, silk-scarf painter, needle pointer, and woodworker. Besides being incredibly talented, the artists are genuinely nice people. Short biographies and pictures of the artists appear next to their work, so the customer can gain some insights about the person producing each piece. Descriptions of the artists and their work appear elsewhere in this presentation.